Celebrating National Volunteer Week

To acknowledge the hard work of volunteers across the Diocese, we’re taking a moment to say thank you for their incredible contribution during National Volunteer Week.

National Volunteer Week is Australia’s largest annual celebration of volunteering and is happening from 20 to 26 May.

This special event provides an opportunity to highlight the important role of volunteers in our community and invites people not currently volunteering to give it a go.

This year’s theme is Something for Everyone. It recognises the diverse talents people bring to their different roles and encourages others to consider what they could do to support their community.

Nicki Graham, who volunteers in several spaces across Newcastle, including CatholicCare’s Community Kitchens and on her Parish Pastoral Council, says it’s a great opportunity to help others.

On Saturday night, she volunteered at our Civic Park Food Van for the first time.

“Saturday night was freezing cold, and the rain was pouring down, so we set up under a shelter outside Subway,” she explains.

“I kept thinking ‘when my shift finishes, I have a home to go to with a hot shower and a warm bed but there are many in our community who don’t have that luxury.’ 

“Jesus told his disciples to love one another. As followers of Christ, we are asked to do the same. What can we do to be that message of love to our fellow brothers and sisters? 

“Through volunteering for just a few short hours we are letting people know that they are not forgotten, they are loved.

“In the cold, wet conditions of Saturday night, my heart was warmed by the kindness I saw around me, the gratitude of the guests we served, and the dignity bestowed upon them through CatholicCare’s outreach."

There are so many volunteering opportunities available across the Catholic Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle. To find out how you can help, visit the Diocese website or the CatholicCare website.

Last year, we spoke to a number of volunteers to find out why they do it. Hear from them in the video below.

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